A consortium of Aboriginal service providers has been formed to deliver a $1.3 million expansion of the NSW Government’s Together Home program to reduce the number of people sleeping rough on the Central Coast.
Minister for Families, Communities and Disability Services Gareth Ward said the program would secure housing for rough sleepers and connect them with wrap-around support and cultural-specific services to help break the cycle of homelessness.
“Finding a home for someone who is homeless is only part of the solution – engaging them in the services and support they require to rebuild their lives is an equally important step,” Mr Ward said.
“The Aboriginal-led Together Home initiative will help people rebuild their family, community and cultural connections, support them to develop daily living skills and facilitate engagement with education and employment.”
The $1.3 million initiative will be led by Yerin Aboriginal Health Service, in partnership with Gudjagang Ngara Li-Dhl Aboriginal Corporation and Mingaletta Aboriginal Corporation, with housing from Compass Housing.
Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast and Member for Terrigal Adam Crouch said the initiative would provide culturally safe assertive outreach, housing and wrap-around support to local Aboriginal people.
“This will be delivered to the Aboriginal community by the Aboriginal community,” Mr Crouch said.
“The $1.3 million of funding is targeted at getting people off the streets for good. It will provide access to services that Aboriginal people need to secure and maintain their tenancy, improve their health and wellbeing and move towards training and employment opportunities.”
The NSW Government consulted with the Barang Regional Alliance to bring together specialist Aboriginal support services and deliver the program.
Barang Regional Alliance Executive Director Vickie Parry said the initiative would bring about positive change for the community.
“The consortium will work with Community who are homeless on the Central Coast and will provide intensive wraparound support to sustain tenancies and improve their health, economic and wellbeing,” Ms Parry said.
The recent street count of people sleeping rough recorded a 53 per cent reduction in the Central Coast local government area over the last 12 months.
The Aboriginal-led Together Home initiative forms part of the ambitious Premier’s Priority to halve street sleeping across NSW by 2025.